Multicolored Asian Lady Beetle Facts
- First of all, the term Multicolored Asian Lady Beetle serves as the common name for a remarkable species of beetle. However, this magnificent insect has a particularly bad reputation. That’s because it remains considered as one of the most invasive species on the entire planet.
- For starters, unlike most invertebrates, this truly remarkable insect often produces multiple generations in a single year. In addition, various human actions rapidly spread it to virtually every part of the globe. Since this creature breeds prolifically, it quickly outnumbers native species. This, therefore, frequently upsets the natural balance in these regions.
- Furthermore, in the United States in 1978, people introduced them as biological control agents. However, the beetles have now, not surprisingly, become an invasive pest in portions of the country. That’s because the irrepressible insect also often inundates homes in large numbers.
Multicolored Asian Lady Beetle Physical Description
Though the impressive animal constitutes a rather small variety of insect, the Multicolored Asian Lady Beetle still stands out from the crowd. That’s because, the truly awesome arthropod actually measures slightly larger than other beetles of the type often colloquially known as ladybugs.
The variety also attains an average length of roughly 0.28 in (7 mm), and a width of about 0.22 in (5.5 mm). It also distinguishes itself from many related species in another way. That holds true due to the fact that it displays no appreciable degree of the principle of sexual dimorphism.
Furthermore, its body develops roughly oval in shape. Also, the head typically hides under the pronotum, which generally resembles a disk. Lastly, the Multicolored Asian Lady Beetle also displays a combination of red and yellow colors with anywhere from 0-19 small black spots as well.
- Kingdom: Animalia
- Phylum: Arthropoda
- Class: Insecta
- Order: Coleoptera
- Family: Coccinellidae
- Genus: Harmonia
- Species: H. axyridis
Multicolored Asian Lady Beetle Distribution, Habitat, and Ecology
The native distribution of the fascinating Multicolored Asian Lady Beetle covers a rather wide swathe of eastern Asia. This comparatively extensive range extends from portions of Siberia to Japan, China, and Taiwan.
However, the ill-fated attempts to utilize the creature to control aphids in North America led to it also becoming established in that country as well. The remarkable insect now inhabits all portions of the continental United States, and portions of Canada.
In addition, its natural dwelling places indicate a preference for a particular variety of trees. However, the incredibly adaptable insect readily makes use of what Nature provides. Therefore, virtually any vegetation will be utilized if need be.
Further, the insect primarily feeds on numerous scale insects and aphids. Relative to its size, these lovely creatures nevertheless remain voracious predators. For its own defense, it releases a noxious chemical to deter would be predators.
Finally, this awesome insect remains an important center of a cultural belief in parts of its range, even today. That’s because many people hold to the belief that its larval form can predict the severity of the coming winter. It supposedly does this based on the particular color patterns it displays.